Wednesday, June 02, 2021

CrimeFest Awards 2021 - Winners

Here are the winners of the CrimeFest Awards 2021.

From the Press Release:

CRIMEFEST, one of Europe’s leading crime writing conventions, has announced the winners of its annual awards.

Now in its 14th year, the awards honour the best crime books released in 2020 in the UK.

Trevor Wood receives a £1,000 prize for the CRIMEFEST Specsavers Debut Crime Novel Award for The Man in the Street. Trevor Wood served in the Royal Navy for 16 years. The Man on the Street is set in his home city Newcastle, featuring a homeless veteran grappling with PTSD, dubbed by Lee Child as ‘an instant classic’.

Specsavers co-founder, Dame Mary Perkins, said: “Many congratulations to Trevor who really captured the city of Newcastle wonderfully in his book and let’s hope there’s more to come from this up-and-coming author. We don’t need research to tell us that more people have taken to reading in these last 15 months than ever before – with stories to take them out of their lockdowns and isolation – so we were delighted once again to sponsor this award.”

The £1,000 prize for the CRIMEFEST Audible Sounds of Crime Award, sponsored by Audible, and voted for by Audible subscribers goes to Richard Osman and the actress Lesley Manville who read The Thursday Murder Club. Osman has ruled the bestseller lists with his smash-hit debut crime novel.

The CRIMEFEST H.R.F Keating Award for the best biographical or critical book in the genre goes to Martin Edwards, editor of Howdunit: A Masterclass in Crime Writing by Members of the Detection Club, which has also been nominated for the 2021 Edgar Allen Poe Award.

As well as a prolific novelist, Martin Edwards is a renowned editor, reviewer, columnist and versatile writer of non-fiction, and is a leading authority on crime fiction; he received the CWA Diamond Dagger in 2020

The CRIMEFEST Last Laugh Award goes to Carl Hiaasen for Squeeze Me, a novel that captures the Trump era with Hiaasen's inimitable savage humour and eccentric characters.

The CRIMEFEST eDunnit Award for best e-book sees Ian Rankin take the title with A Song for the Dark Times, beating fellow giants of the genre, Michael Connelly and James Lee Burke.

The Publishers Association latest figures show fiction sales soared by 16% in 2020, with audiobook sales climbing by more than a third, as readers locked down escaped into books. The crime genre has led the rise in book sales and reading during the pandemic. Richard Osman’s The Thursday Murder Club is one of the key titles being cited as one of the key drivers.

Laurence Howell, Vice President, Content at Audible, said: “Congratulations to Richard Osman for the Audible Sounds of Crime Award. Audiobooks have been a great comfort to many over the past year, because of their intimate, immersive nature and the crime and mystery genre has been incredibly popular.”

CRIMEFEST Best Crime Novel for Children, aged 8-12, goes to Serena Patel for Anisha, Accidental Detective, which has already garnered plaudits, including the Sainsbury’s Children’s Book Award for Fiction, and is shortlisted for the British Book Awards Children fiction Book of the Year 2021.

CRIMEFEST Best Crime Novel for Young Adults, aged 12-16, goes to the multi-award-winning author Patrice Lawrence, who won the CRIMEFEST award in 2018 for Indigo Donut. This year her book Eight Pieces of Silva, an addictive tale of a teenager’s hunt for her missing sister, takes the top prize.

Adrian Muller, Co-host of CRIMEFEST, said: “A huge congratulations to all CRIMEFEST award winners this year. We had to cancel the last two physical conventions due to the pandemic, so it’s a real pleasure to be able to continue CRIMEFEST’s annual awards, albeit virtually. We are thankful to both Specsavers and to Audible for their on-going support.”

CRIMEFEST has had to postpone its 2020 and 2021 conventions, due to Covid restrictions. Hosted in Bristol, it is one of the biggest crime fiction events in Europe, and one of the most popular dates in the international crime fiction calendar, with circa 60 panel events and 150 authors over four days. Tentative dates for next year's Bristol CRIMEFEST are 12-15 May, 2022.

In light of Covid-19, the 2021 winners were announced online with an awards ceremony, hosted by Agatha Raisin co-star Matt McCooey, who plays Inspector Bill Wong in the hit series. The ceremony is available on the website www.crimefest.com and via its social media pages, from midnight on Tuesday, 1 June.

All winners receive a Bristol Blue commemorative Glass Award.

Leading British crime fiction reviewers and reviewers of fiction for children and young adults form the CRIMEFEST judging panels, aside from Audible Sounds, where Audible listeners establish the shortlist and the winning title.

CRIMEFEST was created following the hugely successful one-off visit to Bristol in 2006 of the American Left Coast Crime convention. It was established in 2008. It follows the egalitarian format of most US conventions, making it open to all commercially published authors and readers alike.


2021 CRIMEFEST Awards: Shortlists in full (winners in bold)

CRIMEFEST SPECSAVERS DEBUT CRIME NOVEL AWARD

Eva Bjorg Aegisdottir for The Creak on the Stairs (Orenda Books)

Marion Brunet for Summer of Reckoning (Bitter Lemon Press)

Robin Morgan-Bentley for The Wreckage (Trapeze)

Richard Osman for The Thursday Murder Club (Viking)

Mara Timon for City of Spies (Zaffre)

Trevor Wood for The Man on the Street (Quercus)

 

CRIMEFEST AUDIBLE SOUNDS OF CRIME AWARD

Lee and Andrew Child for The Sentinel, read by Jeff Harding (Transworld)

Lucy Foley for The Guest List read by Olivia Dowd, Aoife McMahon, Chloe Massey, Sarah Ovens, Rich Keeble and Jot Davies (HarperFiction)

Robert Galbraith for Troubled Blood read by Robert Glenister (Little, Brown Book Group)

Anthony Horowitz for Moonflower Murders read by Lesley Manville and Allan Corduner (Penguin Random House Audio)

Peter James for Find Them Dead read by Daniel Weyman (Pan)

Lisa Jewell for The Invisible Girl read by Rebekah Staton (Penguin Random House Audio)

Lynda La Plante for Buried read by Alex Hassell and Annie Aldington (Zaffre)

TM Logan for The Catch read by Philip Stevens (Zaffre)

Richard Osman for The Thursday Murder Club read by Lesley Manville (Viking)

Ian Rankin for A Song for the Dark Times read by James Macpherson (Orion)


CRIMEFEST H.R.F. KEATING AWARD

Mark Aldridge for Agatha Christie’s Poirot: The Greatest Detective in the World (HarperCollins)

Martin Edwards (editor) for Howdunit: A Masterclass in Crime Writing by Members of the Detection Club (Collins Crime Club)

Colin Larkin for Cover Me: The Vintage Art of Pan Books: 1950-1965 (Telos Publishing)

Andrew Lycett for Conan Doyle’s Wide World (Tauris Parke)

Heather Martin for The Reacher Guy (Little, Brown Book Group)

Sheila Mitchell for HRF Keating: A Life of Crime (Level Best Books)

Craig Sisterson for Southern Cross Crime: The Pocket Essential Guide to the Crime Fiction, Film & TV of Australia and New Zealand (Oldcastle Books)

Peter Temple for The Red Hand: Stories, reflections and the last appearance of Jack Irish (riverrun)

 

CRIMEFEST LAST LAUGH AWARD

Ben Aaronovitch for False Value (Gollancz)

Christopher Fowler for Bryant & May - Oranges and Lemons (Doubleday)

Elly Griffiths for The Postscript Murders (Quercus)

Carl Hiaasen for Squeeze Me (Little, Brown Book Group)

Richard Osman for The Thursday Murder Club (Viking)

Malcolm Pryce for The Corpse in the Garden of Perfect Brightness (Bloomsbury Publishing)

Khurrum Rahman for Ride or Die (HQ)

Olga Wojtas for Miss Blaine's Prefect and the Vampire Menace (Contraband)


CRIMEFEST eDUNNIT AWARD

Gabriel Bergmoser for The Hunted (Faber)

Sharon  Bolton for The Split (Trapeze) 

J. P. Carter for Little Boy Lost (Avon, HarperCollins)

Steve Cavanagh for Fifty-Fifty (Orion Fiction)

Michael Connelly for Fair Warning (Orion Fiction)

James Lee Burke for A Private Cathedral (Orion Fiction)

Ian Rankin for A Song for the Dark Times (Orion Fiction)

Holly Watt for The Dead Line (Raven Books)

 

CRIMEFEST BEST CRIME NOVEL FOR CHILDREN (ages 8-12)

Sophie Deen for Mission Shark Bytes (Walker Books)

Elly Griffiths for A Girl Called Justice - The Smugglers' Secret (Quercus Children's Books)

Anthony Horowitz for Nightshade (Walker Books)

Jack Noel for My Headteacher is an Evil Genius (Walker Books)

Serena Patel for Anisha, Accidental Detective (Usborne Publishing)

Serena Patel for School's Cancelled (Usborne Publishing)

Onjali Q. Rauf for The Night Bus Hero (Orion Children's Books)

Dave Shelton for The Pencil Case (David Fickling Books)

 

CRIMEFEST BEST CRIME NOVEL FOR YOUNG ADULTS (ages 12-16)

William Hussey for Hideous Beauty (Usborne Publishing)

Lauren James for The Reckless Afterlife of Harriet Stoker (Walker Books)

Matt Killeen for Devil Darling Spy (Usborne Publishing)

Patrice Lawrence for Eight Pieces of Silva (Imprint - Hodder Children's Books)

Simon Lelic for Deadfall (Imprint - Hodder Children's Books)

Robert Muchamore for Hacking, Heists & Flaming Arrows (Hot Key Books)

Patrick Ness for Burn (Walker Books)

Nancy Springer for The Case of the Missing Marquess (Hot Key Books)

 

Tuesday, June 01, 2021

New Releases - June 2021

Here's a snapshot of what I think is published for the first time in June 2021 (and is usually a UK date but occasionally will be a US or Australian date). June and future months (and years) can be found on the Future Releases page. If I've missed anything or got the date wrong, do please leave a comment.

• Adams, Jane - Bright Young Things #7 Detective Chief Inspector Henry Johnstone, 1928
• Arlidge, M J - Truth or Dare #10 Helen Grace, Southampton Police
• Austin, Stephanie - The Dartmoor Murders #4 Juno Browne
• Bannister, Jo - China Roses #5 Detective Constable Hazel Best & Gabriel Ash
• Boyd, Damien - Dying Inside #11 DI Nick Dixon
• Brown, Eric - Murder At Standing Stone Manor #8 Donald Langham, Crime Writer, London, 1955
• Bussi, Michel - The Other Mother (apa The Double Mother)
• Clarke, Karen - And Then She Ran
• Corry, Jane - The Lies We Tell
• Costello, Liza - The Estate
• Cowan-Erskine, Beth - Loch Down Abbey
• Craven, M W - Dead Ground #4 Washington Poe
• Dean, Jason - Tracer #1 Korso
• Dhand, A A - The Blood Divide
• Dunford, Caroline - A Death on Stage #16 Euphemia Martins
• Edwards, Rachel - Lucky
• Eldridge, Jim - Murder at Madame Tussauds #6 Former Detective Inspector Daniel Wilson
• Erskine, Fiona - Phosphate Rocks: A Death in Ten Objects
• Evans, Kate - A Wake of Crows #1 DCI Donna Morris, Scarborough
• Gerhardsen, Carin - Black Ice
• Goldberg, Leonard - The Abduction of Pretty Penny #5 Daughter of Sherlock Holmes series
• Harrison, Cora - Murder in an Orchard Cemetery #8 Reverend Mother Aquinas, Cork, 1920s
• Hausmann, Romy - Sleepless
• Hilary, Sarah - Fragile
• Hughes, Kim - Operation Black Key #2 Staff Sergeant Dom Riley
• Isaac, Jane - One Good Lie
• Johnson, Kate - Death on the Aisle #3 Molly Higgins
• Jonasson, Ragnar - The Girl Who Died
• Jones, Nick - The Shadows of London #2 Joseph Bridgeman
• King, Laurie R - Castle Shade #17 Mary Russell and her husband, Sherlock Holmes
• Knox, Joseph - True Crime Story
• Le Corre, Herve - In the Shadow of the Fire
• Mackay, Niki - The Girls Inside (as NJ Mackay)
• Mackintosh, Clare - Hostage
• MacLeod, Torquil - Mammon in Malmo #8 Inspector Anita Sundstrom
• Mahmood, Imran - I Know What I Saw
• Marques, Patricia - The Colours of Death #1 Inspector Isabel Reis, Lisbon
• Massey, Sujata - The Bombay Prince #3 Perveen Mistry, India's only female lawyer, 1920s
• McEwan, Lynne - In Dark Water #1 DI Shona Oliver, Dumfries
• McKenna, Clara - Murder at Keyhaven Castle #3 Stella and Lyndy, 1905
• Meyrick, Denzil - For Any Other Truth #9 DCI Daley
• Michaelides, Alex - The Maidens
• Moore, Syd - Strange Tricks #6 Rosie Strange
• Nickson, Chris - Brass Lives #9 Detective Inspector Tom Harper, Leeds Police, 1890s
• Padura, Leonardo - The Transparency of Time #8 Lt Mario Conde, Cuba
• Pearse, Lesley - Suspects
• Phifer, Helen - The Hiding Place #3 Detective Morgan Brookes
• Redondo, Dolores - The North Face of the Heart
• Robotham, Michael - When You Are Mine
• Roslund, Anders - Knock Knock #9 Ewert Grens
• Seeber, Claire - The Street Party
• Silver, Abi - The Midas Game #5 Burton and Lamb
• Steadman, Catherine - The Disappearing Act
• Thomas, Joe - Brazilian Psycho #4 The São Paulo Quartet
• Thomson, Rupert - Barcelona Dreaming
• Tucker, Nancy - The First Day of Spring
• Waugh, Daisy - Phone for the Fish Knives #2 Tode family
• Wilkes, Elena - The Man I Married
• Willberg, T A - Marion Lane and the Midnight Murder
• Wood, Trevor - One Way Street #2 Jimmy Mullen, Newcastle
• Wyer, Carol - A Cut for a Cut #2 DI Kate Young, Staffordshire
• Yahagi, Toshihiko - The Wrong Goodbye #3 Eiji Futamura

Thursday, May 20, 2021

CWA Dagger Awards 2021 - Shortlists

Please find below, the press release detailing the shortlists for this year's CWA Dagger Awards. I have highlighted the authors' in translation and details of the Awards ceremony.


CWA Dagger Awards Shortlists Announced

A debut novel is up against one of Britain’s biggest and most celebrated authors for the crime novel of the year.

The 2021 shortlists for the prestigious CWA Dagger awards, which honour the very best in the crime writing genre, have been announced.

The world-famous Crime Writers’ Association (CWA) Daggers are the oldest awards in the genre, and have been synonymous with quality crime writing for over half a century.

Past winners of the CWA Gold Dagger, which is awarded for the crime novel of the year, include John le Carré, Reginald Hill and Ruth Rendell.

This year’s shortlist sees City of Ghosts by Ben Creed, praised as a ‘brilliantly orchestrated and totally engrossing’ debut thriller by the CWA judges, up against Robert Galbraith’s Troubled Blood, hailed as a ‘magnificent multi-layered epic’.

Galbraith, the pseudonym for J.K. Rowling, is also in contention for the Ian Fleming Steel Dagger. The Ian Fleming Steel Dagger is supported by Ian Fleming Publications Ltd, the Fleming family-owned company that looks after the James Bond literary brand. The award celebrates the best thriller.

Heating up the shortlist is Chris Whitaker, who took home the John Creasey (New Blood) Dagger in 2017 with his debut, Tall Oaks. His latest novel, We Begin at The End is not only up for the Ian Fleming Steel but also the Gold Dagger. Praised as ‘truly memorable’ by the CWA judges, We Begin at The End has been a Waterstones Thriller of the Month and sold in 17 territories, with screen rights snapped up by Disney.

Maxim Jakubowski, Chair of the Crime Writers’ Association, said: “The Dagger shortlists again highlight the wealth of great books and diversity within the crime genre. With terrific new titles from authors both familiar and new, including some books impressively nominated in more than a single category, the presence on the Publisher Dagger shortlist of long-standing traditional publishing houses and smaller independents and even, on the Dagger in the Library (voted on by librarians throughout the country), a first, with a self-published writer rubbing shoulders with established veterans. The Daggers are assuredly the best and most prestigious reflection of what's happening on the crime and mystery writing front.”

Set against the bleakness, terror and depravity of Stalin’s 1950s Leningrad, City of Ghosts by Ben Creed returns for the much-anticipated CWA John Creasey (New Blood) Dagger, awarded to the best debut novel. Ben Creed is the pseudonym for an author duo who met on a writing course, Barney Thompson a classically trained musician and fluent Russian speaker, and Chris Rickaby, formerly an advertising copywriter.

Booker prize winner John Banville is the heavyweight contender on the Sapere Books Historical Dagger shortlist. The prizewinning novelist and literary polymath, considered Ireland’s greatest living novelist, is in the running for Snow, his first murder mystery published under his real name rather than his nom de plume, Benjamin Black. The shortlist also includes Vaseem Khan who swapped his contemporary light-hearted Baby Ganesh Agency series with a historical crime novel Midnight at Malabar House, set in 1950s Bombay.

The ALCS Gold Dagger for Non-Fiction sees the forensic pathologist Sue Black’s reflections, Written in Bone on the shortlist, praised by the CWA judges as a ‘humane, wise book’. She’s up against Andrew Harding’s These Are Not Gentle People, a beautifully written investigation into dark and murderous events in a rural South African community, dubbed by Alexander McCall Smith as a masterpiece.

The Crime Fiction in Translation Dagger shortlist features the Swedish writer Mikael Niemi with his sumptuous blend of historical fact with fictional intrigue, To Cook a Bear, translated by Deborah Bragan-Turner. From one of Israel’s most beloved writers is Three by D A Mishani, translated by Jessica Cohen, and from South Korea is Yun Ko-eun’s original and inventive thriller The Disaster Tourist translated by Lizzie Buehler.

The CWA Daggers are one of the few high-profile awards that honour the short story. The shortlist features the Sunday Times bestseller, Clare Mackintosh, and the founding member of the North East Noir crime writers’ group, Robert Scragg.

The Dagger in the Library is voted on exclusively by librarians, chosen for the author’s body of work and support of libraries. This year sees C L Taylor, Peter May, Lisa Jewell, James Oswald, Denise Mina and L J Ross on the shortlist.

The Best Crime and Mystery Publisher of the Year Dagger celebrates publishers and imprints demonstrating excellence and diversity in crime writing. Among the shortlist, the esteemed Faber & Faber vies against the independent publisher, No Exit Press. 

The winners will be announced at Daggers Live!, the online CWA Dagger awards ceremony on 1 July at 7.30pm. Barry Forshaw will be Master of Ceremonies and Abir Mukherjee is the guest speaker.

The 2021 Diamond Dagger for lifetime achievement, the highest honour in British crime writing, has already been announced, awarded to Martina Cole. She will also feature in the Daggers Live! event.

 

Dagger Shortlists 2021

CWA GOLD DAGGER

S A Cosby: Blacktop Wasteland (Headline, Headline Publishing Group)

Ben Creed: City of Ghosts (Welbeck Fiction, Welbeck Publishing Group)

Nicci French: House of Correction (Simon & Schuster)

Robert Galbraith: Troubled Blood (Sphere, Little, Brown Book Group)

Elly Griffiths: The Postscript Murders (Quercus)

Thomas Mullen: Midnight Atlanta (Little, Brown, Little, Brown Book Group)

Chris Whitaker: We Begin at the End (Zaffre, Bonnier)

 

CWA IAN FLEMING STEEL DAGGER

Robert Galbraith: Troubled Blood (Sphere, Little, Brown Book Group)

Michael Robotham: When She Was Good (Sphere, Little, Brown Book Group)

Catherine Ryan Howard: The Nothing Man (Atlantic Books)

Stuart Turton: The Devil and the Dark Water (Raven Books, Bloomsbury Publishing)

Ruth Ware: One by One (Vintage, Harvill Secker)

Chris Whitaker: We Begin at the End (Zaffre, Bonnier Books UK) 

 

CWA JOHN CREASEY (NEW BLOOD) DAGGER

Eva Björg Ægisdóttir: The Creak on the Stairs (Orenda), Translator: Victoria Cribb

Ben Creed: City of Ghosts (Welbeck Publishing)   

Egan Hughes: The One That Got Away (Sphere, Little, Brown Book Group)

S W Kane: The Bone Jar (Thomas & Mercer, Amazon Publishing)  

Stephen Spotswood: Fortune Favours the Dead (Wildfire, Headline)

John Vercher: Three-Fifths (Pushkin Press)           

 

CWA SAPERE BOOKS HISTORICAL DAGGER

John Banville: Snow (Faber)

Vaseem Khan: Midnight at Malabar House (Hodder & Stoughton)

Chris Lloyd: The Unwanted Dead (Orion Fiction, The Orion Publishing Group)

Michael Russell: The City Under Siege (Constable, Little, Brown Book Group)

David Stafford: Skelton’s Guide to Domestic Poisons (Allison & Busby)

Ovidia Yu: The Mimosa Tree Mystery (Constable, Little, Brown Book Group)

 

CWA ALCS GOLD DAGGER FOR NON-FICTION

Sue Black: Written in Bone (Doubleday, Penguin)

Becky Cooper:  We Keep the Dead Close (William Heinemann, Penguin)

Andrew Harding: These Are Not Gentle People (MacLehose Press, Quercus)

Debora Harding: Dancing with the Octopus (Profile Books Limited)

Nick Hayes: The Book of Trespass (Bloomsbury Circus, Bloomsbury Publishing)

Ben MacIntyre: Agent Sonya (Viking, Penguin)

 

CWA CRIME FICTION IN TRANSLATION DAGGER

Fredrik Backman: Anxious People, translated by Neil Smith (Michael Joseph, Penguin)

Roxanne Bouchard: The Coral Bride, translated by David Warriner (Orenda Books)

Yun Ko-eun: The Disaster Tourist, translated by Lizzie Buehler (Serpent's Tail)

D A Mishani: Three, translated by Jessica Cohen (Riverrun, Hachette Book Group)

Mikael Niemi: To Cook a Bear, translated by Deborah Bragan-Turner (MacLehose Press, Quercus)

Agnes Ravatn:  The Seven Doors, translated by Rosie Hedger (Orenda Books)

 

CWA SHORT STORY DAGGER

Robert Scragg: ‘A Dog Is for Life, Not Just for Christmas’ in Afraid of the Christmas Lights, edited by Miranda Jewess (Criminal Minds Group)

Elle Croft: ‘Deathbed’ in Afraid of the Light, edited by Robert Scragg & Various (Criminal Minds Group)

Dominic Nolan: ‘Daddy Dearest’ in Afraid of the Light, edited by Robert Scragg & Various (Criminal Minds Group)

Victoria Selman: ‘Hunted’ in Afraid of the Christmas Lights, edited by Miranda Jewess (Criminal Minds Group)

Clare Mackintosh: ‘Monsters’ in First Edition: Celebrating 21 Years of Goldsboro Books (The Dome Press)

James Delargy: ‘Planting Nan in Afraid of the Light, edited by Robert Scragg & Various (Criminal Minds Group)

 

CWA PUBLISHERS DAGGER

Faber & Faber

Head of Zeus

Michael Joseph

No Exit Press

Raven

Viper

 

CWA DEBUT DAGGER

(Competition for an unpublished novel)

Ashley Harrison – The Looking Glass Spy

Fiona McPhillips – Underwater

Biba Pearce – Rough Justice        

Hannah Redding – Deception

Edward Regenye – Lightfoot

Jennifer Wilson O’Raghallaigh – Mandatory Reporting

 

CWA DAGGER IN THE LIBRARY

C L Taylor

Peter May

Lisa Jewell

James Oswald

Denise Mina

LJ Ross

Tuesday, May 11, 2021

2021 Theakston Old Peculier Crime Novel of the Year - Longlist

The longlist for the 2021 Theakston Old Peculier Crime Novel of the Year has been announced and you can cast your vote on the website.



Saturday, May 01, 2021

New Releases - May 2021

Here's a snapshot of what I think is published for the first time in May 2021 (and is usually a UK date but occasionally will be a US or Australian date). May and future months (and years) can be found on the Future Releases page. If I've missed anything or got the date wrong, do please leave a comment.

• Bannalec, Jean-Luc - The Granite Coast Murders #6 Commissioner Dupin
• Billingham, Billy - Call to Kill #1 Matt Mason
• Bolton, Sharon - The Pact
• Bradby, Tom - Triple Cross #3 Kate Henderson
• Brittany, Amanda - The Perfect Nanny (with Karen Clarke)
• Candlish, Louise - The Skylight (Quick Reads Novella)
• Casey, Jane - The Killing Kind
• Castle, A M - The Invitation
• Chowdhury, Ajay - The Waiter
• Corrigan, J A - The Nurse
• Croft, Adam - In Cold Blood #3 Rutland crime series
• Dahl, Kjell Ola - The Assistant
• Dawson, Jeff - Hell Gate #3 Ingo Finch
• del Arbol, Victor - Above the Rain
• DeLuca, Marjorie - The Savage Instinct
• Dolan, Eva - One Half Truth #6 DI Zigic and DS Ferreira, Peterborough
• Downing, David - Wedding Station #7 John Russell
• Fitzek, Sebastian - Seat 7a
• Gardner, Frank - Outbreak #3 Luke Carlton, Ex-Special Boat Service commando
• Giordano, Mario - Auntie Poldi and the Lost Madonna #4 Auntie Poldi, Sicily
• Goldberg, Leonard - The Art of Deception #4 Daughter of Sherlock Holmes series
• Grimwood, Jack - Island Reich
• Hall, Traci - Murder in a Scottish Garden #2 Paislee Shaw, Nairn, Scotland
• Hayes, Terry - The Year of the Locust
• Hilton, Matt - Blood Kin #8 Grey and Villere, Louisiana
• Hollingdrake, Malcolm - Syn #2 Merseyside Crime Series
• Hughes, Egan - Leave the Lights On
• Hunter, Alice - The Serial Killer's Wife
• Hunter, M A - Discarded #4 The Missing Children Case Files
• Hurley, Graham - Intermission #5 Enora Andresson
• James, Peter - Left You Dead #17 Detective Superintendent Roy Grace, Brighton
• James, Peter - Wish You Were Dead (Quick Reads Novella)
• Kent, Christobel - The Widower
• Knight, Alanna - Murder at the World's Edge #4 Tam Eildor
• Kyazze, A B - Into the Mouth of the Lion
• Linskey, Howard - Don't Let Him In
• Mackay, Niki - Loaded
• Manning, Nina - The Bridesmaid
• Mariani, Scott - The Pandemic Plot #23 Ben Hope, Ex-SAS
• Marshall, D L - Anthrax Island #1 John Tyler
• Masters, Priscilla - The Subsequent Wife
• McDermid, Val - Resistance (Graphic Novel)
• Middleton, Lia - When They Find Her
• Mohamed, Nadifa - The Fortune Men
• Nadel, Barbara - Forfeit #23 Cetin Ikmen, Policeman, Istanbul
• Naspini, Sacha - Oxygen
• Northedge, Charlotte - The House Guest
• O'Keeffe, Bernard - The Final Round #1 DI Garibaldi, Barnes, London
• Oldham, Nick - Scarred #26 DCI Christie
• O'Sullivan, Darren - The Players
• Pálsdóttir, Sólveig - Silenced
• Parks, Adele - Both of You
• Pattison, C L - The Guest Book
• Russell, S L - The Thorn of Truth
• Ryan, Chris - Manhunter #1 Joe Bowman
• Scarr, Louisa - Last Place You Look #1 DS Butler & DC West
• Shaw, William - The Trawlerman #4 DS Alexandra Cupidi
• Sinclair, Rob - The Bonds of Blood #5 DI Dani Stephens
• Smith, Alexander McCall - The Man with the Silver Saab #3 Detective Varg, Malmo
• Southward, Adam - The Stranger Next Door
• Spain, Jo - The Perfect Lie
• Speechley, Ruby - A Mother Like You
• Stirling, Joss - Grey Stones #4 Jess Bridges
• Thomson, Lesley - The Distant Dead #8 Stella Darnell
• Trow, M J - The Knight's Tale #1 Geoffrey Chaucer
• Truhen, Aidan - Seven Demons
• Wagner, David P - To Die in Tuscany #7 Rick Montoya Italian Mysteries
• Walker, Martin - The Coldest Case #14 Bruno, Chief of Police, France
• Weaver, Ashley - A Peculiar Combination #1 Electra McDonnell
• Wood, Michael - Time Is Running Out #7 DCI Matilda Darke
• Wood, Tom A Quiet Man #9 Victor, Assassin

Thursday, April 29, 2021

US Cozy Review: Two from Amanda Flower

Welcome to another entry in my irregular feature: US cozy review.

Here are my reviews of Assaulted Caramel and Lethal Licorice the first two in the Amish Candy Shop Mystery series by Amanda Flower.
 
I have to say I enjoyed these two so much, not only have I bought the rest of the series, but also the first book in the spin-off series, the Amish Matchmaker Mysteries, and the first book in the author's new series, published by Hallmark, Dead-End Detective

If you are in the UK you might find Lethal Licorice is available via your library's ebook service, Libby. It certainly is, in Birmingham Libraries.

ASSAULTED CARAMEL by Amanda Flower is the first book in the Amish Candy Shop series which features Bailey King, a New York-based chocolatier to the stars. 

On the eve of an important job announcement which may affect Bailey’s future, she is summoned to her grandparents’ home in the Amish village of Harvest, Ohio as her grandfather is very ill. When she arrives, she finds her grandfather arguing with a property developer who is snapping up all the Amish shops on the main street. Her grandfather will not sell his candy shop and collapses as a result of the argument, combined with his severe heart disease.

Bailey’s first night back in Harvest does not end well. Retrieving her mobile phone from the kitchen -the only place there is electric - she stumbles over the body of the loathsome property developer, killed with her grandfather’s favourite chocolate-slicing knife. A knife she had used the previous day.

Her grandfather and then herself soon become the prime suspects and she is even suspected (though not really) by the dishy Deputy Aiden.

Bailey has to clear her name but more importantly her ill grandfather’s name and soon so she can return to New York for the job announcement due a couple of days later.

I really enjoyed ASSAULTED CARAMEL. I liked the setting, meeting various quirky residents – including Aiden’s mother Juliet who has a small pet pig, as well as learning about the Amish culture and customs. Bailey is a likeable and funny character and I loved when her city-girl best friend Cass came to visit. I didn’t guess whodunnit and I was pleased that Bailey, with help from her new and clever ginger cat, saved herself from the killer. Indeed, I enjoyed this book so much I went straight onto book two, LETHAL LICORICE.


LETHAL LICORICE is the second book in the Amish Candy Shop series by Amanda Flower. After the events in the series debut, ASSAULTED CARAMEL, Bailey King has now left her New York job and friends to help run her grandparents’ Amish candy shop in Harvest, Ohio.

Not being Amish herself, Bailey is struggling slightly to fit in. Various people think she and the Sheriff’s Deputy Aiden belong together, but Bailey’s heart is still sore from her last relationship. In the meantime, she is entering the Amish Confectionery Competition (ACC) on behalf of her grandparents’ shop. The ACC is a huge deal for whoever wins, bringing tourism and income to both the shop and the town it resides in. One of the competitors, Josephine Weaver, is not happy with Bailey entering as she is not Amish, however she is using Amish methodology and has a special dispensation from the organisers.

As well as being shouted at by Josephine, Bailey’s friend Juliet, mother of Aiden, has lost her pet pig and is in a bad way. Bailey and Juliet look around the nearby church and discover a young Amish woman, Charlotte, playing the organ. The organ sounds out of tune and when Charlotte looks inside, she finds the body of Josephine.

Bailey is again a possible murder suspect, this time in the death of Josephine, especially when the cause of death is an allergy to liquorice – which was the very first sweet to be made in the competition. More of a suspect though is Charlotte as she is at odds with her family and district over her wanting to play the organ and them wanting to ban her.

Again Bailey feels she had to clear her own name and also Charlotte’s.

This second book in the series starts almost where most first books in series do - with the protagonist moving somewhere new or back home to start over. So new readers could easily jump in with book two. I have been deliberately quite vague about the events of book one so as to avoid spoilers.

As with book one, ASSAULTED CARAMEL, I enjoyed this very much. It’s a light read with most chapters ending on a cliff-hanger so you want to read just one more. New characters are introduced and the Amish universe is expanded to include neighbouring districts with differing rules. I look forward to reading the rest of the series.

In fact, these books, much like sweets, are hard to resist.

Thursday, April 15, 2021

CWA Dagger Awards 2021 - Longlists

The Longlists for the CWA Dagger Awards 2021 have been announced and are listed at the bottom of the press release. I have highlighted the comments on the 'In Translation' Dagger (formerly known as the International Dagger) and the timescales.

 

CWA Dagger Awards Longlists Announced

The 2021 longlists for the prestigious CWA Dagger awards, which honour the very best in the crime writing genre, have been announced.

The world-famous Crime Writers’ Association (CWA) Daggers are the oldest awards in the genre, and have been synonymous with quality crime writing for over half a century.

Past winners of the prestigious Gold Dagger, which is awarded for the crime novel of the year, include Ian Rankin, John le Carré, Reginald Hill and Ruth Rendell. This year sees 2019’s winner of the Gold Dagger, M W Craven, return with The Curator. The former probation officer credited the CWA Debut Dagger competition in 2013 for opening the door to his career as an author.

Amer Anwar, who won the Debut Dagger competition in 2008, makes the list with Stone Cold Trouble. Anwar is up against the mighty JK Rowling writing as Robert Galbraith, alongside multi-award-winning authors including Nicci French, Elly Griffiths and Antonia Hodgson.

The Ian Fleming Steel Dagger is famed for showcasing blockbuster thrillers – past winners include Gillian Flynn and Robert Harris. Robert Galbraith is once more in the running, along with Ian Rankin, Stuart Turton, Catherine Ryan Howard, Ruth Ware and Michael Robotham, last year’s Gold winner.

Holly Watt, who won the Fleming Dagger in 2019, also returns to the longlist with The Dead Line.  Another to watch on the Fleming longlist is Chris Whitaker; his book Tall Oaks won the CWA John Creasey (New Blood) Dagger in 2017. Whitaker is long-listed for his latest novel We Begin At The End, which was a Waterstones Thriller of the Month and has sold in 17 territories, with screen rights snapped up by Disney.

Linda Stratmann, Chair of the Crime Writers’ Association, said: “The CWA Dagger awards are unparalleled for their reputation and longevity. The longlists showcase authors – established and new – at the top of their game. It’s not surprising that sales of crime fiction have been so strong during Covid-19. Both fiction and non-fiction have proven to be a great escape for many as we have been stuck at home. As our longlists show, these stories and insights take readers all over the world and through time, from Bombay of the 1950s to ancient Athens to modern-day California and many points between. 

“Crime books can be thrilling mysteries, but they can also provide social commentary, insights into true crime, or explore big questions in life. The vast and diverse talent in these longlists show why it’s the UK’s most popular and enduring genre. We are proud to provide a platform for debut, emerging and established authors, and to honour the very best in crime writing.”

The much-anticipated John Creasey (New Blood) Dagger highlights the best debut novels. Among the rising stars of 2021 is Susan Allot with her Australian-set debut, The Silence, praised by the Wall Street Journal as ‘emotionally wrenching’.

New writing duo Chris Rickaby and Barney Thompson, writing under the pseudonym Ben Creed, also feature with their debut, City of Ghosts, a tense historical novel set in 1951 Russia. The global theme continues with Stephanie Scott’s accomplished debut, What’s Left of Me Is Yours, set in modern day Japan, exploring romantic and familial love, duty and murder.

Booker prize winner John Banville is a heavyweight contender on the Sapere Books Historical Dagger longlist. The prizewinning novelist and literary polymath, considered Ireland’s greatest living novelist, is in the running for Snow, his first murder mystery published under his real name rather than his nom de plume, Benjamin Black.

This Sapere Books Historical Dagger longlist also includes Nicola Upson, who was shortlisted for the award in 2018, and S J Parris, whose Giordano Bruno books, Heresy, Sacrilege and Treachery have all been previously shortlisted. Vaseem Khan also features on the list as he swaps his contemporary light-hearted Baby Ganesh Agency series with his historical crime novel Midnight at Malabar House, set in 1950s Bombay.

The Crime Fiction in Translation Dagger sees the bestselling Jo Nesbo on the list with his stand-alone thriller, The Kingdom, translated by Robert Ferguson. Joining the Norwegian is Swedish writer Mikael Niemi with his sumptuous blend of historical fact with fictional intrigue, To Cook a Bear, centred around the Laestadian revivalist movement of the 1850s, translated by Sarah Death.

From one of Israel’s most beloved writers is Three by D A Mishani, translated by Jessica Cohen, and from South Korea, Yun Ko-eun’s original and inventive thriller The Disaster Tourist makes the longlist, with translator Lizzie Buehler.

The CWA Daggers are one of the few high-profile awards that honour the short story. Christopher Fowler, the award-winning author of the Bryant & May mystery novels, has written over 50 novels and short story collections. Fowler, who won the CWA Dagger in the Library in 2015, is longlisted for his short story, Head Count. The list also features acclaimed authors Clare Mackintosh and Stuart Turton. Founding member of the North East Noir crime writers’ group, Robert Scragg, also dominates the category as an editor and writer of short stories.

The ALCS Gold Dagger for Non-Fiction features the 2020 CWA Diamond Dagger winner, Martin Edwards, with Howdunit. A renowned editor, prolific novelist, and leading authority on crime fiction, Howdunit offers a masterclass in crime writing by leading exponents of the genre.

Dan Smith also features with The Peer and the Gangster which tells the incredible story of one of the largest-scale political cover-ups in British history – the 1964 scandal of an alleged homosexual affair between Lord Boothby, a well-known member of the House of Lords, and London’s most notorious mobster Ronnie Kray.

The Dagger in the Library is voted on exclusively by librarians, chosen for the author’s body of work and support of libraries. This year sees firm favourites from the genre including Nicci French, Lisa Jewell, Margaret Murphy, Erin Kelly, Peter May and Denise Mina on the longlist.

The Best Crime and Mystery Publisher of the Year Dagger, which celebrates publishers and imprints demonstrating excellence and diversity in crime writing, pits big publishing houses Harper Fiction and Faber & Faber against independent publishers such as No Exit Press. 

The CWA Dagger shortlist will be announced in May with the awards ceremony taking place at the start of July. The 2021 Diamond Dagger for lifetime achievement, the highest honour in British crime writing, has already been announced, awarded to Martina Cole.

The Longlists in Full:

GOLD DAGGER

Amer Anwar: Stone Cold Trouble (Dialogue Books, Little, Brown Book Group)

S A Cosby: Blacktop Wasteland (Headline, Headline Publishing Group)

M W Craven: The Curator (Constable, Little, Brown Book Group)

Ben Creed: City of Ghosts (Welbeck Fiction, Welbeck Publishing Group)

Garry Disher: Peace (Viper, Profile Books)

Mick Finlay: Arrowood and the Thames Corpses (HQ, HarperCollins)

Nicci French: House of Correction (Simon & Schuster)

Robert Galbraith: Troubled Blood (Sphere, Little, Brown Book Group)

Elly Griffiths: The Postscript Murders (Quercus)

Antonia Hodgson: The Silver Collar (Hodder & Stoughton)

S G Maclean: The House of Lamentations (Quercus Fiction, Quercus)

C D Major: The Other Girl (Thomas & Mercer)

Thomas Mullen: Midnight Atlanta (Little, Brown, Little, Brown Book Group)

S J Parris: Execution (Harper Fiction, HarperCollins)

Tade Thompson: Making Wolf (Constable, Little, Brown Book Group)

Nicola Upson: The Dead of Winter (Faber)

Chris Whitaker: We Begin at the End (Zaffre, Bonnier)

Rebecca Whitney: The Hidden Girls (Mantle, Pan Macmillan)

 

IAN FLEMING STEEL DAGGER

Charles Cumming: Box 88 (HarperFiction, HarperCollins)

Robert Galbraith: Troubled Blood (Sphere, Little, Brown Book Group)

Ryan Gattis: The System (Picador, Pan Macmillan)

Ian Rankin: Song for the Dark Times (Orion Fiction, The Orion Publishing Group)

Rod Reynolds: Blood Red City (Orenda Books)

Craig Robertson: Watch Him Die (Simon & Schuster)

Michael Robotham: When She Was Good (Sphere, Little, Brown Book Group)

Catherine Ryan Howard: The Nothing Man (Atlantic Books)

Stuart Turton: The Devil and the Dark Water (Raven Books, Bloomsbury Publishing)

Ruth Ware: One by One (Harvill Secker, Vintage)

Holly Watt: The Dead Line (Raven Books, Bloomsbury Publishing)

Chris Whitaker: We Begin at the End (Zaffre, Bonnier Books UK)

 

JOHN CREASEY (NEW BLOOD) DAGGER

Eva Björg Ægisdóttir: The Creak on the Stairs (tr. Victoria Cribb) (Orenda) 

Susan Allott: The Silence (Borough, HarperCollins)

Emma Christie: The Silent Daughter (Welbeck Publishing)

Catherine Cooper: The Chalet (Harper Fiction, HarperCollins)

Ben Creed: City of Ghosts (Welbeck Publishing) 

Judi Daykin: Under Violent Skies (Joffe Books)    

Egan Hughes: The One That Got Away (Little Brown, Sphere)

S W Kane: The Bone Jar (Thomas & Mercer)        

Rob McInroy: Cuddies Strip (Ringwood Press)    

Stephanie Scott: What's Left of Me Is Yours (Orion, Weidenfeld)

Stephen Spotswood: Fortune Favours the Dead (Headline, Wildfire)

John Vercher: Three Fifths (Pushkin Press)           

S R White: Hermit (Headline)

 

SAPERE BOOKS HISTORICAL DAGGER

J M Alvey: Justice for Athena (Canelo Digital Publishing Limited)

John Banville: Snow (Faber)

Vaseem Khan: Midnight at Malabar House (Hodder & Stoughton)

Laurie King: Riviera Gold (Allison & Busby)

Chris Lloyd: The Unwanted Dead (Orion Fiction, The Orion Publishing Group)

S J Parris: Execution (HarperFiction, HarperCollins)

Ben Pastor: The Night of Shooting Stars (Bitter Lemon Press)

Michael Russell: The City Under Siege (Constable, Little, Brown Book Group)

David S. Stafford: Skelton’s Guide to Domestic Poisons (Allison & Busby)

A D Swanston: Chaos (Bantam Press, Transworld)

Nicola Upson: The Dead of Winter (Faber)

Ovidia Yu: The Mimosa Tree Mystery (Constable, Little, Brown Book Group)

 

CRIME FICTION IN TRANSLATION DAGGER

Fredrik Backman: Anxious People, translated by Neil Smith (Michael Joseph, Penguin)

Roxanne Bouchard: The Coral Bride, translated by David Warriner (Orenda Books)

Marc Elsberg: Greed, translated by Simon Pare (Black Swan, Penguin)

Yun Ko-eun: The Disaster Tourist, translated by Lizzie Buehler (Serpent's Tail)

Volker Kutscher: The March Fallen, translated by Niall Sellar (Sandstone Press)

D A Mishani: Three, translated by Jessica Cohen (Riverrun, Hachette Book Group)

Jo Nesbo: The Kingdom, translated by Robert Ferguson (Harvill Secker, Penguin)

Håkan Nesser: The Secret Life of Mr Roos, translated by Sarah Death (Mantle, Pan Macmillan)

Mikael Niemi: To Cook a Bear, translated by Deborah Bragan-Turner (Maclehose Press, Quercus)

Agnes Ravatn:  The Seven Doors, translated by Rosie Hedger (Orenda Books)

Maike Wetzel: Elly, translated by Lyn Marven (Scribe UK)

 

SHORT STORY DAGGER

Robert Scragg: ‘A Dog is for Life, Not Just for Christmas’ in Afraid of the Christmas Lights, edited by Robert Scragg (Robert Scragg)

Elle Croft: ‘Deathbed’ in Afraid of the Light, edited by Robert Scragg (Robert Scragg)

Dominic Nolan: ‘Daddy Dearest’ in Afraid of the Light, edited by Robert Scragg (Robert Scragg)

Adam Southward: ‘Especially at Christmas’ in Afraid of the Christmas Lights, edited by Robert Scragg (Robert Scragg)

Christopher Fowler: ‘Head Count’ in First Edition: Celebrating 21 Years of Goldsboro Books (The Dome Press)

Victoria Selman: ‘Hunted’ in Afraid of the Christmas Lights, edited by Robert Scragg (Robert Scragg)

Clare Mackintosh: ‘Monsters’ in First Edition: Celebrating 21 Years of Goldsboro Books (The Dome Press)

Stuart Turton: ‘Murder Most Vial’ in First Edition: Celebrating 21 Years of Goldsboro Books (The Dome Press)

Livia Llewelyn: ‘One of These Nights’ in Cutting Edge: Noir Stories by Women, edited by Joyce Carol Oates (Pushkin Press, Pushkin Vertigo)

James Delargy: ‘Planting Nan in Afraid of the Light, edited by Robert Scragg (Robert Scragg)

Simpson Grears: ‘The Foot of the Walk Murders’ in The Foot of the Walk Murders, edited by Simpson Grears (Rymour Books)

 

ALCS GOLD DAGGER FOR NON-FICTION

Sue Black: Written in Bone (Doubleday, Penguin)

Amanda Brown: The Prison Doctor; Women Inside (HQ, HarperCollins)

Becky Cooper: We Keep the Dead Close (William Heinemann, Penguin)

Martin Edwards: Howdunit (Collins Crime Club, HarperCollins)

Andrew Harding: These Are Not Gentle People (MacLehose, Quercus)

Debora Harding: Dancing with the Octopus (Profile Books Limited)

Nick Hayes: The Book of Trespass (Bloomsbury Circus, Bloomsbury Publishing)

Ben MacIntyre: Agent Sonya (Viking, Penguin)

Jax Miller: Hell in the Heartland (HarperCollins)

Daniel Smith: The Peer and the Gangster (The History Press)

Ravi Somaiya: Operation Morthor (Viking, Penguin)

Kate Summerscale: The Haunting of Alma Fielding (Bloomsbury Circus, Bloomsbury Publishing)

Mark Townsend: No Return (Guardian, Faber & Faber)

 

DAGGER IN THE LIBRARY

Lin Anderson

Nicci French

Lisa Jewell

Erin Kelly

Peter May

Denise Mina

Margaret Murphy

James Oswald

L J Ross

C L Taylor

               

PUBLISHERS’ DAGGER

Bitter Lemon Press

Faber & Faber

Harper Fiction

Head of Zeus

Michael Joseph

No Exit Press

Orenda Books

Pushkin Vertigo

Raven

Sphere

Viper

Wednesday, April 14, 2021

Blog Tour: Extract from Silenced by Solveig Pálsdóttir tr. Quentin Bates

Welcome to the second stop on the blog tour for Silenced by Solveig Pálsdóttir translated by Quentin Bates. The first stop was at the Nordic Lighthouse

I am very pleased to be able to share an extract from Silenced, the second in this Icelandic 'Ice and Crime' series which began with The Fox.

Silenced will be available to buy from 15 April.

As a police team is called in to investigate a woman’s suicide at the Hólmsheiði prison outside Reykjavík, to detective Guðgeir Fransson it looks like a tragic but straightforward case.

It’s only afterwards that the pieces begin to fall into place and he takes a deeper interest in Kristín Kjarr’s troubled background, and why she had found herself in prison.

His search leads him to a series of brutal crimes committed twenty years before and the unexplained disappearance of the prime suspect, whose wealthy family closed ranks as every effort was made to keep skeletons securely hidden in closets – while the Reykjavík police struggle to deal with a spate of fresh attacks that bear all the hallmarks of a copycat.


And here's the teaser extract:

Guðgeir had seen more than a few cells during his career. They were all much the same, with a bed, table and chair, as well as an overpowering sense of claustrophobia. But this one with its lively pictures on the walls was an exception, presenting a stark contrast to the lifeless woman on the bed. Leifur looked her over for a moment before he put his bag on the floor, pulled on a pair of gloves and set about gathering evidence.

‘Are these her pictures?’ Guðgeir asked.

‘Yes, she’s an artist,’ Svala replied in a low voice from by the door. ‘Was, I mean,’ she corrected herself. ‘Kristín had recently begun painting again after a long break. She was incredibly talented, fantastic stuff.’

Svala bit her lip and fell silent.

‘There’s something odd about all this,’ she said, hesitating, shaking her head slowly. ‘These last few weeks she had been working flat-out, as if she had been preparing for a big exhibition. She hardly even stopped for meals.’

‘Did she have much else to do with her time?’ Guðgeir asked, looking down at the woman on the bed. Her brown hair was cropped short and her face was made up of fine lines. Her ears were pierced, with a delicate silver ring in each one. Her arms were at her sides, hands closed. His eye was caught by the ring finger of her right hand, and a heavy silver ring with a striking emblem. He took a picture of it with his phone.

‘No, not exactly,’ Svala said. ‘There isn’t much to do, but all the same…’ she was about to place a hand on the body.

‘Don’t,’ Leifur said quickly. He looked up from what he was doing and glared at Svala. ‘Don’t touch anything.’

‘Of course, sorry,’ she muttered, withdrawing her hand.

Leifur gave her a smile, as if to soften his harsh words, and paused to inspect the pictures on the walls.

‘They’re beautifully done,’ he admitted.

‘That’s right. Kristín was artistic and a sensitive soul. I can’t understand why she did this. I just don’t get it at all,’ she sighed, a look of despair in her eyes. ‘She lived a life that was so much richer than most people you meet in here do. Spiritually, I mean.’

‘Creative people frequently tend to be vulnerable,’ Leifur said, sounding philosophical. ‘She wanted to leave something behind.’

‘Kjarr. Kristín Kjarr,’ Guðgeir said, as if to himself. ‘Did she have any children?’ he asked.

Svala shook her head. ‘I don’t think so, no.’

‘No suicide note to be seen here,’ Leifur announced.

‘Are any of the other prisoners aware of this yet?’ Guðgeir asked, stepping cautiously past a large plastic cup that lay on the floor.

‘No, none of them,’ Svala said, running hands through her reddish hair, pushing it back behind her ears, which gave her the look of a young girl. ‘But I’m sure some of them noticed that Kristín didn’t show up this morning.’

‘Could you let the priest know that he can go and see the family?’ Guðgeir said. ‘We’ll come down to the office when we’re finished, and it would be useful to have a chat with you then, Svala. You seem to have known Kristín well.’

She nodded, anxious to be helpful, but also relieved to be released from the discomfort of being present. Guðgeir waited for her footsteps in the corridor to fade away before he turned to Leifur.

‘Don’t you think this is all weird?’ he asked, rubbing his chin, the dark bristles rough against his hand.

***

Don't forget to follow the tour!





Wednesday, April 07, 2021

CrimeFest Awards 2021 - Shortlists

Here are the shortlisted titles for the CrimeFest Awards 2021.

From the Press Release:

CRIMEFEST, one of Europe’s leading crime writing conventions, has announced the shortlists for its annual awards.

The awards feature the Specsavers Debut Crime Novel Award, the winner of which receives a £1,000 prize.

A further £1,000 prize fund is also awarded to the Audible Sounds of Crime Award, sponsored by Audible.

Up for the hotly-contended Specsavers Debut Crime Novel Award is Richard Osman, who ruled the bestseller lists with his smash-hit, The Thursday Murder Club. The shortlist also features Trevor Wood, who won the CWA John Creasey (New Blood) Dagger in 2020, for The Man on the Street.

Sheila Michell's biography of her husband - and namesake of the H.R.F. Keating Award – is in contention for the best biographical or critical book in the genre. Michell’s HRF Keating: A Life of Crime has been hailed as the definitive portrait of the artist and man.

The H.R.F Keating Award also features Martin Edwards, editor of HowDunit: A Masterclass in Crime Writing by Members of the Detection Club, which has also been nominated for the 2021 Edgar Allen Poe Award. Also in contention is Heather Martin, an academic, linguist and author of the definitive Lee Child biography, The Reacher Guy.

The Last Laugh Award sees debut-author Richard Osman return as he is pitted against stalwarts of the genre, including Elly Griffiths and Carl Hiaasen.

Osman, who dominates the shortlists, is also up for the Audible Sounds of Crime Award. The Pointless TV-star is up against veritable giants of the genre, including Robert Galbraith, Ian Rankin and Lynda La Plante. Voted by Audible subscribers, the shortlist also sees last year’s winner Lee Child return, with his brother Andrew, for The Sentinel, read by Jeff Harding.

Laurence Howell, Vice President, Content at Audible said: “We are delighted to continue as sponsor of the Audible Sounds of Crime Award. With the isolation and social distancing of the last year, audio books have been a great comfort to many because of the intimate, immersive nature of audiobooks. Crime and thriller audiobooks remain one of our bestselling genres, as perhaps more of us seek escapism and entertainment in these trying times. Congratulations to all award nominees.”

The eDunnit Award, for best e-book, sees established names of the genre Ian Rankin, Michael Connelly and James Lee Burke up against the young Australian Gabriel Bergmoser, a multi-award-winning screenwriter, playwright and author who is already a phenomenon in his own country.

Best Crime Novel for Children, aged 8-12, features giant of the genre Anthony Horowitz for Nightshade, from the popular Alex Rider series. The shortlist also sees the founder of Making Herstory, a human rights organisation working to end trafficking and abuse, and bestselling children’s author, Onjali Q. Rauf, for The Night Bus Hero.

Best Crime Novel for Young Adults, aged 12-16, features Enola Holmes: The Case of the Missing Marquess by Nancy Springer, which was released last year to coincide with the Netflix adaptation, starring Millie Bobby Brown. The list also features the multi-award-winning author Patrice Lawrence, who won the CRIMEFEST award in 2018 for Indigo Donut. Lawrence is in contention this year for Eight Pieces of Silva, an addictive tale of a teenager’s hunt for her missing sister.

Now in its 14th year, the awards honour the best crime books released in 2020 in the UK.

Adrian Muller, Co-host of CRIMEFEST, said: “CRIMEFEST usually takes place in May, and although we had to cancel our physical convention this year, it’s important to continue these awards. They’ve built up a strong reputation after so many years, and we are thankful to both Audible and to Specsavers for their on-going support.”

CRIMEFEST has had to postpone its 2020 and 2021 conventions, due to Covid restrictions. Hosted in Bristol, it is one of the biggest crime fiction events in Europe, and one of the most popular dates in the international crime fiction calendar, with circa 60 panel events and 150 authors over four days.

In light of Covid-19, the 2021 winners will be announced online at www.crimefest.com and via its social media pages this summer.

All category winners will receive a Bristol Blue commemorative Glass Award.

Leading British crime fiction reviewers and reviewers of fiction for children and young adults form the CRIMEFEST judging panels, aside from Audible Sounds in which Audible listeners establish the shortlist and the winning title.

Co-host of CRIMEFEST, Donna Moore, added: “As well as the debut awards, we are one of the few genre awards that recognise e-books and audiobooks, humour, children and Young Adult crime fiction novels. We aim to be the most inclusive of awards to reflect the values of our convention.”

CRIMEFEST was created following the hugely successful one-off visit to Bristol in 2006 of the American Left Coast Crime convention. It was established in 2008. It follows the egalitarian format of most US conventions, making it open to all commercially published authors and readers alike.

 

The Shortlists 

SPECSAVERS DEBUT CRIME NOVEL AWARD

Eva Bjorg Aegisdottir for The Creak on the Stairs (Orenda Books)

Marion Brunet for Summer of Reckoning (Bitter Lemon Press)

Robin Morgan-Bentley for The Wreckage (Trapeze)

Richard Osman for The Thursday Murder Club (Viking)

Mara Timon for City of Spies (Zaffre)

Trevor Wood for The Man on the Street  (Quercus)

 

AUDIBLE SOUNDS OF CRIME AWARD

Lee and Andrew Child for The Sentinel, read by Jeff Harding (Transworld)

Lucy Foley for The Guest List read by Olivia Dowd, Aoife McMahon, Chloe Massey, Sarah Ovens, Rich Keeble and Jot Davies (HarperFiction)

Robert Galbraith for Troubled Blood read by Robert Glenister (Little, Brown Book Group)

Anthony Horowitz for Moonflower Murders read by Lesley Manville and Allan Corduner (Penguin Random House Audio)

Peter James for Find Them Dead read by Daniel Weyman (Pan)

Lisa Jewell for The Invisible Girl read by Rebekah Staton (Penguin Random House Audio)

Lynda La Plante for Buried read by Alex Hassell and Annie Aldington (Zaffre)

TM Logan for The Catch read by Philip Stevens (Zaffre)

Richard Osman for The Thursday Murder Club read by Lesley Manville (Viking)

Ian Rankin for A Song for the Dark Times read by James Macpherson (Orion)


H.R.F. KEATING AWARD

Mark Aldridge for Agatha Christie’s Poirot: The Greatest Detective in the World (HarperCollins)

Martin Edwards (editor) for Howdunit: A Masterclass in Crime Writing by Members of the Detection Club (Collins Crime Club)

Colin Larkin for Cover Me: The Vintage Art of Pan Books: 1950-1965 (Telos Publishing)

Andrew Lycett for Conan Doyle’s Wide World (Tauris Parke)

Heather Martin for The Reacher Guy (Little, Brown Book Group)

Sheila Mitchell for HRF Keating: A Life of Crime (Level Best Books)

Craig Sisterson for Southern Cross Crime: The Pocket Essential Guide to the Crime Fiction, Film & TV of Australia and New Zealand (Oldcastle Books)

Peter Temple for The Red Hand: Stories, reflections and the last appearance of Jack Irish (riverrun)

 

LAST LAUGH AWARD

Ben Aaronovitch for False Value (Gollancz)

Christopher Fowler for Bryant & May - Oranges and Lemons (Doubleday)

Elly Griffiths for The Postscript Murders (Quercus)

Carl Hiaasen for Squeeze Me (Little, Brown Book Group)

Richard Osman for The Thursday Murder Club (Viking)

Malcolm Pryce for The Corpse in the Garden of Perfect Brightness (Bloomsbury Publishing)

Khurrum Rahman for Ride or Die (HQ)

Olga Wojtas for Miss Blaine's Prefect and the Vampire Menace (Contraband)


eDUNNIT AWARD

Gabriel Bergmoser for The Hunted (Faber)

Sharon  Bolton for The Split (Trapeze) 

J. P. Carter for Little Boy Lost (Avon, HarperCollins)

Steve Cavanagh for Fifty-Fifty (Orion Fiction)

Michael Connelly for Fair Warning (Orion Fiction)

James Lee Burke for A Private Cathedral (Orion Fiction)

Ian Rankin for A Song for the Dark Times (Orion Fiction)

Holly Watt for The Dead Line (Raven Books)

 

BEST CRIME NOVEL FOR CHILDREN (ages 8-12)

Sophie Deen for Mission Shark Bytes (Walker Books)

Elly Griffiths for A Girl Called Justice - The Smugglers' Secret (Imprint - Quercus Children's Books)

Anthony Horowitz for Nightshade (Walker Books)

Jack Noel for My Headteacher is an Evil Genius (Walker Books)

Serena Patel for Anisha, Accidental Detective (Usborne Publishing)

Serena Patel for School's Cancelled (Usborne Publishing)

Onjali Q. Rauf for The Night Bus Hero (Imprint - Orion Children's Books)

Dave Shelton for The Pencil Case (David Fickling Books)

 

BEST CRIME NOVEL FOR YOUNG ADULTS (ages 12-16)

William Hussey for Hideous Beauty (Usborne Publishing)

Lauren James for The Reckless Afterlife of Harriet Stoker (Walker Books)

Matt Killeen for Devil Darling Spy (Usborne Publishing)

Patrice Lawrence for Eight Pieces of Silva (Imprint - Hodder Children's Books)

Simon Lelic for Deadfall (Imprint - Hodder Children's Books)

Robert Muchamore for Hacking, Heists & Flaming Arrows (Hot Key Books)

Patrick Ness for Burn (Walker Books)

Nancy Springer for The Case of the Missing Marquess (Hot Key Books)